DeHire Charges...? - Cyrill666 {P}

I have a 9 month old Citroen C4 Grand... sadly, now with a cigarette burn on the passenger seat (not from me I hasten to add - GRRRR). The car is a contract hire from Citroen Contract Motoring so I am liable for the damage. I considered replacing the bottom front passenger seat pad - but my dealer today informed me that it would cost just under £500 supplied and fitted - that does seem excessive for a seat pad, but there's nothing I can do about that of course.

I just wondered if anyone had any idea what sort of dehire charge would be applied to a cigarette burn? I'm kind of hoping it's not going to be 500 notes!


DeHire Charges...? - mikeyb
Dont know the answer, but could a good specialist repair it?
DeHire Charges...? - hillman1 {p}
You would probably be able to get a firm like those that do local paint repair jobs to do a seat repair... Can't think of any particular names at the moment though... sorry!
DeHire Charges...? - shawad
I would imagine that they would charge you the £500 to repair it, and then not actually repair it, but sell it on with the burn.

Much the same way as car rental companies charge you for damage, but I've never heard of them repairing any cosmetic damage.
DeHire Charges...? - ablandy
i would think they will probably try to take you for as much as possible as smoking in cars devalues them. I thought all contract hire cars now were non smoking for this reason- if it is a company car, then technically smoking in it is illegal (this is my understanding of the law).

DeHire Charges...? - Cyrill666 {P}

Just to clarify, I'm self employed and the car is through my own business. The damage was actually caused by the cigarette lighter not a cigarette - so no smoking actually took place. I don't smoke, nobody in my family smokes... however someone (who shall remain nameless - but not blameless!) had a fiddle with the cigarette lighter and dropped it onto the seat - at least that's the story I was given on discovering the damage.

I must admint I was suprised when I took delivery and there was a lighter fitted - I thought you had to specify a "smoker pack" these days.

Just idly thinking... I wonder if comprehensive insurance covers this kind of accidental damage - anyone any idea?

Kind regards,

Edited by Cyrill666 {P} on 19/09/2008 at 16:16

DeHire Charges...? - ablandy
sorry, but you said it was a cigarette burn so i led myself off down that path.

certainly insurance might be a possibility - only one way to find out. Just have to work out the cost increase from claiming + the excess.

As for who did it, im going to place my money on it being your son.

DeHire Charges...? - Altea Ego
I would imagine that they would charge you the £500 to repair it and then
not actually repair it but sell it on with the burn.

No they will charge you the 500 quid for a new seat base, and then it get it invisibly mended for 50 quid
DeHire Charges...? - Cyrill666 {P}
Sorry, should have explained it properly in the first place :)

My son would NEVER do anything like that... at least that's what he said to begin with... eventually owning up when faced with the rather condeming evidence.


So how good are the invisible repairs? I have been quoted £60 for a repair - but that's without them actually seeing the damage.

Obviously I don't want an invisible repair, only to be stung for the 500 notes further down the line too.

Image of damage -

Kids hey?


Edited by Cyrill666 {P} on 19/09/2008 at 17:05

DeHire Charges...? - Optimist
FWIW I can't see that being repaired without trace and my understanding is that when cars come off contract hire they are looked at verycarefully.

Could a body shop or upholsterer fit the pad less expensively than the dealer? Can't see why insurance shouldn't cover it: it's accidental damage after all. It all comes down to your excess NCB etc, etc.

Edited by Optimist on 19/09/2008 at 18:58

DeHire Charges...? - Bill Payer
Not the same kind of material, but when I bought my Merc at 5mths old it looked brand-new apart from a very out of place deep cut in the centre console, which is a light grey grained plastic.

The salesman dismissed it as an issue and said it would be invisibily repaired. It was too, and you would never know that it had been damaged.
DeHire Charges...? - Cyrill666 {P}
Just a quick update...

My current insurance company today agreed to pay for the replacement (less £200 Excess) - my new insurance company charged me an additional £33 for the claim history - so £233 in all... looking on the bright side - that's much better than £500!

DeHire Charges...? - Dipstick
Hertz were fined for charging retail but repairing at business rates in the States some years ago, viz:

In August 1988, Hertz was involved in a dispute involving charges for repairs that resulted from collisions with Hertz vehicles. It was charged that Hertz, in some instances, had claimed for damages when repairs were not made and, in other instances, paid discounted wholesale rates for car repairs, while charging the retail rates to the parties involved. Although it was noted that such rental car companies as Avis, Budget, and Alamo also followed the practice of charging retail repair costs, according to Business Week, Hertz failed to disclose to those concerned that they would be billed for repairs at 'prevailing retail rates.' Hertz agreed to pay $13.7 million in restitution and $6.35 million in fines, 'the largest fine ever imposed upon a corporation in a criminal consumer fraud case,' according to Andrew J. Maloney, U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of New York.

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